Top Seeds To Contest European Junior Finals

22 Mar 05

The top two seeds will contest both the men's and women's finals of the 16th European Junior U19 Championships after straightforward semi-final victories at the Bellevuestadion in Malmo, Sweden.

It was third time lucky for Germany's second seed Simon Rosner who beat 5/8 seed Tom Richards after losing to the Englishman in the event in each of the last two years. Richards, from Weybridge in Surrey, took the opening game - but the Wurzburg-born 17-year-old fought back to level the match, then cruised to victory after taking the following two games without dropping a single point.

Rosner will face England's top seed Chris Simpson, a semi-finalist last year. The Guernsey-born 17-year-old from Brighton in Sussex brushed aside compatriot James Wright, a 3/4 seed from Leicester, 9-6 9-1 9-3 to reach the final without dropping a game.

The women's semi-finals followed a similar path, with Belgian favourite Charlie de Rycke despatching her English opponent Rachel Willmott in straight games 9-4 9-0 9-1, while second seed Jenna Gates, from Brighton, needed four games to overcome her English compatriot Fiona Moverley 9-4 9-6 1-9 9-3.

The women's final is a true battle of champions, with de Rycke, the reigning European junior champion, taking on the recently-crowned British junior champion.

Men's semi-finals:
[1] Chris Simpson (ENG) bt [3/4] James Wright (ENG) 9-6, 9-1, 9-3
[2] Simon Rosner (GER) bt [5/8] Tom Richards (ENG) 6-9, 9-6, 9-0, 9-0

Women's Semi-finals:
[1] Charlie de Rycke (BEL) bt [5/8] Rachel Willmott (ENG) 9-4, 9-0, 9-1
[2] Jenna Gates (ENG) bt [5/8] Fiona Moverley (ENG) 9-4, 9-6, 1-9, 9-3